Originally Posted by Prutser
So the sump will be dragging through the mud indeed.
Of course, you have the deepest sump installed. Not representative of a GS.
Originally Posted by Ras Thurlo
check out the rake differential between the two bikes. Was the GS specifically designed with significant rake, or where all bikes like this once?
I can't see if the bike in back is flat on the ground or on a stand. Looks nose-down. I'll try to compare my XR400R to my GS.
I also have concluded that 300mm front travel is not at all the holy grail of forks. Not for me, at least. Using that much travel would be far too uncomfortable for the riding I do which is more like rocky jeep trails than fast desert. And for rocky singletrack I ABSOLUTELY do not want the additional wheelbase. 225~250 travel is fine for me. Modern bikes are giving more rear suspension than front, which is very anti-GS. So I would like to improve my front forks without adding a lot of travel, but I'd like to add more travel at the rear.
As for the appropriate amount of trail, I don't think the GS is perfect at all. Remember, trail is only accurate on flat ground. When you hit a rock with a glancing blow, the contact point is well forward of the point from which trail is measured and can easily give 'negative trail' for that condition. In my experience, the GS is not a very good performer in this way and has less trail than any similar bike that I have noted. Your basic KTM or HP2 has 20+ mm more trail, meaning that when your front wheel bounces off that rock you get that much less leverage fighting your handlebar. BTDT; the Airhead GS is a real workout in rocks. It's 25 year old geometry based on 40 year old street bikes.